The Turner Prize has traditionally been surrounded by controversy and, in many respects, disdain. For British artists, to win the Turner Prize may be the achievement of a lifetime, but for many of the viewing public the lingering thought is often "...eh?" Nevertheless, the Turner Prize is always the highlight of the arts calender and never fails to be entertaining at the very least.
Turner Prize winners have often gone on to great success, most notably (or notoriously) Damien Hirst, whose "Mother and Child, Divided" won in 1995, having already been nominated in 1992 with "The Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living." Steve McQueen also won the prize in 1999 with a short film about Buster Keaton. His name may ring a bell, but not for art. McQueen has gone on to be an award winning film director, with two award winning movies in his catalogue so far; 2008's "Hunger" and this year's smash "Shame". McQueen will be again be delving into some very difficult territory with the release of "Twelve Years a Slave" in 2013.
This year's Turner nominations Spartacus Chetwynd, Luke Fowler, Paul Noble and Elizabeth Price, and includes film, performance, installations, detailed line drawings and painting across the artists' exhibitions. Although Paul Noble has been pegged as an 'early favourite' by the Independent, Chedwynd is by far the most exciting of the artists. Her performance work is certainly original and her nominated piece exhibits puppet portrayals of Jesus and Barabbas.
The winner receives £25,000 and £5,000 is awarded to each of the other nominees. The Turner Prize exhibition is at Tate Britain in London until January and the winner will be announced this December.